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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Let's Talk Sources!

It took me quite a while to start using sources. Before, I couldn't see a point to it at all. But, writing mostly about medieval times, I have found a constant need for them, and I've decided to share a few of my favorites with you.

The Sorcerer's Companion: A Guide to the Magical World of Harry Potter by Allan Zola Kronzek & Elizabeth Kronzek

I just happened to stumble across a very used copy of this at a thrift store. Though The Sorcerer's Companion sounds like a collection of fan fictions about J.K. Rowling's hit fantasy, it is actually the opposite. This book focuses on many mythical topics, their origins, and why modern authors still use them. A few of my favorite topics in this consist of banshees, charms, hippogriffs, Morgana, and mermaids.

(Find The Sorcerer's Companion here.)

Irish & Celtic Baby Names

Separate websites, these four links are extremely helpful in my writing (especially considering that most of my novels take place in Ireland). I've been using babynamesofireland.com for a longer period of time than amethyst-night.com/names, but I find both equally helpful.

Amethyst-night.com/names certainly has a more peaceful layout than babynamesofireland, but the latter provides names with more definitions and pronunciations. I recommend both, but tend to use amethyst-night.com/names more.

(Find Irish boy names here, Irish girl names here, Celtic male names here, & Celtic female names here.)

Medieval People, Titles, Positions, Trades, & Classes PDF

This twenty-page document is definitely the most helpful towards my writing. I tend to skip past the Catholic church's positions, but aim more towards the titles of nobility. (And yet I still haven't scanned throughout this entire file.)

An example of just how helpful this PDF is is this: Have you ever heard of a viceroy before? I haven't. Maybe most people have and I'm one of the few that hasn't, but I didn't even know that there were varying positions of dukes and duchesses.

(Find Medieval People, Titles, Positions, Trades, & Classes here.)

Beasts & Myths of the Middle Ages PDF

This PDF is twenty-three pages and much like The Sorcerer's Companion, but a bit more brief yet explanatory than that. I rarely use it, but it is still nice to have amongst my many other bookmarks.

According to Beasts & Myths of the Middle Ages, stags used to be simple bedtime stories that did not actually exist. (That makes me wonder how people reacted when they went for a walk in the woods and discovered an actual male deer standing in front of them...) Also, unicorns were described as evil and rabid other than sweet and tender. They apparently resembled a mixture of a goat and a small horse with a long, sharp horn in its forehead. (Isn't it strange how myths have changed?)

(Find Beasts & Myths of the Middle Ages here.)

Fantasy Name Generator

I meant to post this earlier in this list, but oh well. And, just so we're clear, this site is AWESOME. It provides millions of names in hundreds of different genres, and is extraordinary. (Five stars to this site!)

Just to show off a little of how well this site works, let me demonstrate: Petaled Agaricus. Hmm... Not quite sure what that is, yet, but it is most likely magical. (I found this phrase under the "fungus" generator... Yes, there is even a generator for types of fungi.)

I have used the generator much in my latest novel, and even have at least two kingdoms named using phrases from this site. (Hint! Ibraura and Blight Tassel.)

(Find the fantasy name generator here.)

Medieval Names of the Months of the Year

This site I use considerably less than the sites above, but I still thought I'd post it. I have forgotten to use months from the middle ages and the Renaissance in my current tale, but it is likely that this page will be used more for the next draft.

(Find the medieval names of the months of the year here.)

Conclusion

I use many more sources than the ones listed above (Google and Wikipedia are some pretty reliable places, after all), including a never-used link to a chart of the Roman numerals (for those few occasions when I actually don't remember what they are).

Anyway, thanks for reading my blog and giving me the time to share. :)

~Olivia

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